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Eritrea is Making Huge Progress on UN MDGs: UNDP

Mar Dieye, a UNDP official, says Eritrea is making huge progress on UN MDGs. - Credit: UN/Eskinder Debebe

Eritrea is Making Huge Progress on UN MDGs: UNDP

By FikreJesus Amahazion,

Mar Dieye, head of UNDP Africa, recently visited Eritrea to monitor development work and engage in dialogue with development partners. One of his findings was that Eritrea is "making huge progress on [the UN] MDGs."1

As a brief reminder, there exist eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which include halving extreme poverty rates, stemming the spread of HIV/AIDS, and ensuring the provision of universal primary education, amongst others. As goals, the MDGs set specific standards for individual countries to achieve - all by 2015. Importantly, the MDGs also provide a blueprint established by the international community and various global development entities, effectively seeking to improve the lives of the world’s poor.2

Mar Dieye’s statement noting Eritrea’s MDG progress mirrors that made earlier this year by John Ging, OCHA Operations Director. At the conclusion of a two-day visit to Eritrea in July of 2013, Ging stated that "Eritrea continues to make impressive progress towards achieving several Millennium Development Goals."3

As a poor, developing country, Eritrea’s unique, multi-faceted approach to development may provide useful lessons to other countries throughout the developing world. Acknowledging the admirable progress of Eritrea in terms of the UN MDGs, Christine Umotoni, the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Eritrea, even went so far as to state that “Eritrea needs to give Africa and the rest of the world lessons on how these successes were achieved.”4

While Eritrea has certainly made tremendous strides in an array of socio-economic and development sectors, it is acknowledged that numerous challenges still exist. Moving forward, the development community, international partners, as well as various state and local actors should remain committed to building upon Eritrea’s past success. Efforts can include promoting regional peace and stability, supporting new development programs, augmenting existing projects, and working with the Eritrean government (and local or international Eritrean organizations) to improve the lives of citizens.


[1] Mar Dieye, UNDP Africa: Eritrea visit:
[3] John Ging, OCHA Opreations Director: Eritrea visit:
[4] Christine Umotoni, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Eritrea: Analysis of MDG success:

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  1. Foreign Minister reiterates to UN delegation Eritrea’s commitment towards ensuring safe neighborhood and cooperative regional environment

    Asmara, 18 December 2013 – Foreign Minister Osman Saleh has reiterated to the visiting UN delegation Eritrea’s commitment towards ensuring safe neighborhood and cooperative regional environment.

    He made the remark yesterday during a dinner reception hosted in honor of the delegation headed by Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, Assistant Secretary General and Regional Director of UNDP/RBA, and Chairman of UNDG-ESA Mission. Present on the occasion were President Isaias Afwerki, Ministers, PFDJ Heads, resident Ambassadors, diplomats and heads of UN agencies in the country.

    Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Osman Saleh pointed out that the visit of the UN delegation was fruitful as it laid the groundwork for high-level interaction pertaining to national development agendas and joint partnership thereof. Moreover, the visit afforded members of the delegation the opportunity of better acquainted with the country and observe some development activities.

    Mr. Osman further explained that Eritrea, as a young nation determined to build a just, prosperous and dignified society, has been exerting sustained endeavors assuming primary responsibility of its development goals, including the mobilization of nationals and domestic resources. “No nation can achieve sustainable development in the absence of safe neighborhood and cooperative regional environment,” the Foreign Minister underlined.

    Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, Head of the UN delegation, on his part expressed appreciation for the hospitality of the Eritrean people and their leadership, and lauded the national development accomplishments being registered. He further pledged the readiness of the UN as regards backing the country’s development priorities.

    “Following our meetings, we have discussed and identified a number of possible entry points for deepening our cooperation and taking it to the next level engagement,” Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye asserted.

  2. Foreign Minister holds talks with UN delegation head

    Asmara, 17 December 2013 – Foreign Minister Osman Saleh yesterday held talk with a visiting UN delegation headed by Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, Assistant Secretary General and Regional Director of UNDP/RBA, and Chairman of UNDG-ESA Mission.

    In the course of the meeting at Asmara Palace Hotel, Mr. Osman Saleh gave extensive briefings to the delegation focusing on the objective situation in the Homeland and the achievements registered in various domains in general, the stance of the Eritrean government as regards human rights and human trafficking, including trading in human organs, in particular. The briefings also included the tasks accomplished pertaining to foiling anti-Eritrea agendas, including the unlawful and unjust sanctions.

    Following the meeting, Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye told Erina that the visit is well-timed, and that it provides the UN and the Government of Eritrea with the opportunity to discuss implementation of the strategic Partnership Cooperation Framework Agreement concluded in January 2013.

    He further indicated that the UN has reiterated its commitment to support the nation’s development endeavors, and stated that Eritrea has made significant progress towards achieving the objectives of the Millennium Development Goals, particularly in the domain of health.

    Moreover, the 8-member delegation met and conducted discussion with the Finance Minister, Mr. Berhane Habtemariam, Dr. Gergis Teklemichael, Minister of National Development, Mr. Yemane Gebreab, Head of Political Affairs at the PFDJ, and Mr. Yemane Gebremeskel, Director of the President’s Office.

    The delegation also visited the Southern and Central administrative regions today, during which it observed the ongoing development activities. In the course of the visit, the members received briefings by the Administrator of the Southern region, Mr. Efrem Gebrekristos, medical experts and others at the regional Referral Hospital, as well as the Fistula Center in Mendefera city.

    Likewise, members of the UN delegation visited the agricultural project in Merhano and the potable water supply project in the area, in addition to the dam in Adi-Lamza, including the irrigation farming activities in its environs, among others. The Administrator of the Central region, Mr. Kahsai Gebrehiwet, accompanied the visiting UN team during the tour of the development sites in the region.

  3. this is the worst bad news to ERITREAN ENEMYS like U S A who think ERITREA can not go for word without their HANDOUT & bad news to swalow to ERITREAN OPPOSITION SELLOUTS

  4. We Eritrean always proud by our task no hesitation about that victory to our defence force to our government off course to our people .Zekerene Keberen Nseweatna Awete Nhafash.

  5. WERE GENA.......they did not see anything yet. Let"s keep the hard work and love among each other. The rest would be history.

  6. Wach wach abiliyom Eru shukor


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